Discount chain QD reopens six more stores
PUBLISHED: 08:19 27 May 2020 | UPDATED: 08:41 27 May 2020
A discount retailer is reopening a further six of its stores around East Anglia.
QD stores said it was “delighted” to reopen in Stowmarket, Newmarket, Beccles, Clacton, Halstead and Saffron Walden from Wednesday, May 27.
The stores will be subject to various measures to ensure strict social distancing, and allowing customers to circulate safely. Strict limits on how many customers can be in the stores at any one time may result queues, owners warned.
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The family-run retail chain sells a wide range of food, pet and convenience items, as well as homewares, household and garden items.
Although classed as an essential retailer, it decided to close its shops at the end of March due to the coronavirus crisis and has been reopening in a phased way.
Larger stores in Hadleigh, Dereham, Melton Mowbray and Peterborough were reopened earlier in May as part of a pilot.
QD group operations director Karl Ottolangui said they had been carefully studying how other essential retailers had handled social distancing issues and had followed advice from government and the British Retail Consortium.
“We are delighted to be able to reopen stores on Wednesday and welcome our customers back.
“Following a successful trial of our larger stores, we are continuing a phased re-opening of our branches across the country.
“Regardless of QD being classified as an essential retailer, we closed at the end of March for the wellbeing of our staff and customers and have been considering when it would appropriate and safe to re-open.”
As well as two metre floor markers in store, checkouts have been provided with protective plastic screens.
David Myatt, manager at QD in Stowmarket, said: “All of the team here at QD are very excited to be back and serving our customers again. We are ensuring our shelves are fully stocked and looking forward to being able to supply all our customers’ needs.
“However, for the safety of our customers and staff, we do ask you to bear with us if you have to queue, and to obey the social distancing procedures we have in place, as we are limiting the number of customers in the store at any one time. We are providing cleaning stations for our trolleys, encouraging contactless or card payments and asking customers to shop alone if at all possible.”